Recent Wanderings & Summer Planning

Today as I looked out my office window (this was written during a quick lunch break) I see grey skies and lots of rain. It was very stormy on Sunday and today again, it is very soggy indeed. We are hoping to sneak in a quick camping trip up to Aberdeenshire this month and my College also has a big fun day planned, and, at the very end of the month there is a big County Guide Camp. So I’m okay with it being damp and dreich just now if the sun decides to shine over the next few weekends. In particular the last weekend in May, the 8 Guides I have from my unit attending the county camp have never really camped before and I would like it to be a really good experience for them…. soggy sleeping bags might put them off!

We’ve managed to sneak in a couple of walks in recent weeks, Dunkeld in Perthshire, Balmerino in Fife and Boddin in Angus. As usual when in Dunkeld we called in at our favourite cake spot; Spill The Beans but we have no new fabulous cafe finds to report.

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 We have however booked our Summer Holiday! The Boyo has a conference in Australia to attend at the end of June and whilst we did consider a holiday in Australia we decided it was not the right time of year and too expensive for all the things we would like to do. We’ll save for a holiday in Australia another time (it also gives me more chance to get over my fear of spiders). Instead I shall fly out and meet the Boyo at Bangkok airport. 1 night in Bangkok then 6 nights in Koh Samui. We are very excited indeed. I’m stocking up on books on my kindle. I’ve bought a new swimsuit and I have the factor 50+ suncream ready. Have any of you been to Thailand? I’m on the hunt for a beach dress, something to throw over my swimsuit, I may even consider making myself one. I have sandals ordered this Merrell Pair for all the walking about we always end up doing and I think I will buy these M&S sandals, I got them last year in a pinky colour and there were great. Footwear is really important as we are never still for very long and I have a knee condition, usually referred to as dodgy knees so my shoes have to be supportive. I had a Merrell pair of sandals for a few years that were not very pretty but they did an excellent job. I unfortunately lost them during a flat move when lived in Hong Kong. I’m hoping this pair will do just as good a job but look a bit nicer as well. I don’t think I really I need any more clothes, although an extra swimsuit would probably be handy. I am finding them to be pretty expensive though so I may just make-do with what I have. I’m trying to stop myself getting too carried away with excitement. Do any of you have summer plans? Our original plan before all of this was a week camping in Skye so this is a bit more exotic and warmer than originally anticipated for this summer.

Now I hope you have a merry day… I’m going home for a cosy evening in, maybe even a wee hot chocolate, in weather like this it is almost obligatory!

Merry in The Ferry..

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On the eve of a moment in History.

Don’t worry this isn’t a pro independence or even a pro-Union post. I decided a long time ago not to discuss my views publicly. In fact to this day I have only discussed my own voting intentions with the Boyo, my sister and my Mum.

Tomorrow every eligible adult in Scotland will have the opportunity to participate in a historical vote. We have had other similar moments in the past but this is the opportunity of this generation to have a say in the future of a wonderful country. I just want to pause at that statement and think… think not about what to vote for but about the fact that we are able to have this vote.

That we are able to have a say, that we are able to participate in discussions and debates and speak our own minds and think about our opinions. Do you know this makes us incredibly lucky?

Scotland 2

Recently a colleague implied that this vote was trivial compared to some of the other issues in the world right now, I do understand what she means but I feel that the ability to have a say in how we want our country to be run is hugely important because our daily lives are what informs our actions and that in order to change the world we need to start on our own doorstep and unlike many countries around the world we have this right (that was long fought for) and that we should use it.

Regardless of the outcome I hope this is a time of change, time for all politicians to hear the thousands of voices all over the UK (and the world). Change can be a good thing.So many people are unhappy in the UK. Many of the changes in recent  years have impacted on the most vulnerable and disadvantaged them further.

The amazing thing about this referendum is the level of engagement. A huge number are expected to vote tomorrow. Many more have engaged in conversations, debates and actions around the UK. Personally I think that is rather great, if only that level of engagement continues think about what could be achieved! Our politicians have to listen a bit harder when a huge proportion of the UK are shouting on their doorstep.

I will finish by saying I love Scotland. I think we live in a beautiful country with fantastic traditions. I spend my weekends wandering the wilds and admiring the stunning landscapes Scotland has to offer. Also don’t forget we are the land of the magnificent Tunnocks Teacakes. teacake

When I vote I will be thinking about the current situation and my hopes for Scotland in the future. This doesn’t mean an outright yes nor does it mean and outright no. The waters are very muddy on both sides. Whatever the outcome I hope we see changes for the better. If we can remain engaged and optimistic then maybe just maybe we will have the opportunity to work towards a better future for all.

Scotland

Weekend Wanderings

Weekend Wanderings

I was working on Sunday for the first time in two years, this has made me realise just how much working Monday-Friday suits me so I am glad this will likely only be a yearly occurrence.

So our wanderings this weekend had to be on Saturday, because I have been so busy recently and because I knew that I was going to be spending the whole of Sunday chatting to people I fancied a walk somewhere a bit more wild and off the beaten track. We decided therefore to not go to the Dunkeld area in Perthshire (we’ll likely be there in 2 weeks anyway) but to another part called Glendevon.
Upper Glendevon

We’d never been there before and we did see a few people out and about but not nearly as many as you do in some of the other more popular parts of Perthshire. It was a walk that involved walking up to two reservoirs which were quite impressive. The first one was very popular with people fishing, it was a bit of a surprise to see around 20 cars parked in what seems like the middle of nowhere! As they were fishing though it was very quiet. It was a nice easy walk. The weather wasn’t hot but it wasn’t cold either and it stayed dry. It was just good to be out in the fresh air. The little hut for the fishing also sells hot and cold drinks so we had had a wee refreshing drink of fanta on the way back.
Lower Glendevon

Click on this link to get walks around the area from Walk Highlands: http://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/perthshire/frandy-reservoirs.shtml

Glendevon Lambs>

We stopped at The Tormaukin Hotel for a coffee on our way back. We resisted the very tasty looking scones as we had already decided that we would be a little bit naughty and try out our local Chinese takeway at the new village. I think we’ll need to come back though and sample the food at this hotel sometime though as it looked like it was going to be really good.

http://www.tormaukinhotel.co.uk/

Our new local Chinese turned out to be very good, which is probably dangerous. Very good portion sizes (enough for me to have for 2 meals) and tasty without being stodgy.
We have a few more local places to try out including a Mexican restaurant and a Farm Cafe. We will certainly not be deprived for eating places in our new location.

Next weekend I may not be out wandering the wilds, instead I am heading to Glasgow for a day and then on the Sunday the Boyo and I are hoping to get our poor neglected bicycles out for a wee turn, fingers crossed for some sunshine.

Getting started…

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So I’m Merry, this will (hopefully) be a blog filled with Stories of books, cakes and wanderings.

I will blether about Cakes from my kitchen and other places, thoughts on books and bookcases and wanderings, sometimes my mind and sometimes on walks in the lovely land of Scotland.

I currently live in a little seaside town but very soon the Boyo and I are moving to the countryside, closer to where we both work. Our plan is to rent for a couple of years so I’ll no doubt chat a little about making our rental house into a home for us.